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Williams officer stabbed during suspected DUI traffic stop

A Good Samaritan helped detain a DUI suspect that stabbed an officer on the side of I-5 Friday.

Posted: Feb 19, 2019 2:40 PM
Updated: Feb 20, 2019 4:17 PM

WILLIAMS, Calif. -A Williams area California Highway Patrol officer was stabbed in the back by a DUI suspect during a traffic stop on Friday. 

According to the California Highway Patrol, at around 10:30 p.m. on Feb. 15 officer Philip Martinson made a traffic stop on a vehicle driving northbound on I-5 south of Myers at over 100 miles per hour.

The driver was identified as Haile Neil, 25, of Martinez. During the stop, Martinson requested that Neil perform a sobriety test. 

Once outside of the vehicle, Neil became belligerent and attempted to flee the officer. According to CHP, a struggle ensued and Neil took out a knife and stabbed the Martinson in the back. 

A passing motorist, later identified as Christian Melendrez, 21, of Arbuckle, stopped and helped Martinson detain Neil. 

Melendrez followed the injured officer's instructions and handcuffed the suspect. 

"The next thing was, 'Can you grab some handcuffs? Help me,'" Melendrez said. "So I did. I took the handcuffs off his belt from the back, turned her over, got one arm in, put one on, got the other one."

Martinson sustained non-life threatening injuries and was later treated and released from a trauma center in Chico. He has been with the Williams Area California Highway Patrol for three and a half years and is recovering. 

California Highway Patrol officers thanked the Good Samaritan for putting his life on the line to help the officer. 

"The good Samaritan, he put his life on the line," said CHP Officer Franco Castillo. "We appreciate what he did for Officer Martinson."

Neil was booked into Colusa County Jail on charges of attempted murder, carrying a concealed dagger and being under the influence of a controlled substance. 

See a full interview with Melendrez below, who helped the officer detain the suspect. 

CNN contributed to this article.

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